ACC's Future Playoff Possibilities And The Big Finish

MIAMI GARDENS, FL - JANUARY 04: A fan holds up their game tickets prior to the Clemson Tigers playing against the West Virginia Mountaineers during the Discover Orange Bowl at Sun Life Stadium on January 4, 2012 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

Brian: With all the uncertainty around the upcoming college football playoff and the excitement around the announcement of the Champions (Cotton v2.0) Bowl, it's nice to see that the ACC will still have a seat at the table.

The "BCS" games Schad is referring to are the six major bowl games in the college football playoff semifinal rotation, largely assumed to be some combination of the Orange, Rose, Champions (or Sugar? Fiesta?), Peach and two others. Essentially the big bowl games are expanding from four to six and the ACC will have a seat at the table. And while details around the revenue distribution for the college football playoff and the major bowls have yet to be ironed out, my guess is all six of these bowls will remain lucrative deals.

Basically, "don't call it BCS AQ status" is still here. The Big Ten and Pac-12 champs will go to the Rose Bowl if they don't make the semifinals (and the Rose isn't a semifinal), the Big 12 and SEC champs to the Champions Bowl and the ACC to the Orange Bowl. The only difference is that the Big East no longer has a seat at the table and a selection committee will pick the remaining teams for the Big six bowls.

The only downside for the ACC as I can see it is that both bowls in Atlanta (Peach) and Orlando (Russell Athletic / Capital One) are selected as semifinal rotation bowls and the ACC loses access to Atlanta (though won't be an issue for BC).

Do you like the idea of the ACC sticking with the Orange Bowl, the semifinal bowl rotation and the idea of a selection committee to pick the top six bowls? Your thoughts?

Jeff: I like the semifinal bowl rotation. Just like many NCAA events rotate sites, I like that football will be in that category now also. The cities involved will be something like Los Angeles, Miami, Atlanta, Dallas, New Orleans and Phoenix. That sounds like a pretty good rotation to me if you are committed to warm weather cities. I also like the fact that the four remaining bowls will be selected in a similar fashion to the current BCS. Let's face it. We would like to compete for a national championship in football, but first we can continue to set the goal as playing in a "BCS" game.

Brian: The good news is that there will be two more major bowl games and a greater chance in playing in one of those as a non-ACC Champ at-large. The bad news, at least in my mind, is having a selection committee pick the six major bowl game participants. At least with the BCS system, there was some relatively objective measurement of programs that went into deciding the BCS bowl at-large teams. The bowls still picked whichever programs they wanted subject to the BCS framework, but fans of programs like Boston College could have a legit gripe about where they finished in the BCS rankings after they got passed over by the major bowls. Now I'm not so sure. A selection committee is rumored to look at objective measurements such as W-L, head-to-head and strength of schedule, but unless the process is fully transparent, schools like BC will have a tougher time gaining access to the major bowls.

The other thing I'm worried about is losing access to some of the better ACC bowl destinations. Again, not like it matters to a school like BC, but losing access to Atlanta would suck. If the Peach Bowl becomes a semifinal bowl with two at-larges, roughly half of the ACC schools have no shot at playing in ATL. Same situation in Orlando where, if a renovated Citrus Bowl lands a semifinal rotation spot, the ACC could lose access to the Citrus Jr. Bowl. Outside of the top three ACC bowl destinations, the pickings are slim. El Paso? Charlotte? Nashville? DC? Shreveport?

Let's hope as part of the ACC's upcoming Orange Bowl announcement that the conference either keeps its spot with the top three bowl games or completely revamps the conference's bowl lineup.

Big Finish

Brian: BC running back Andre Williams is trying out a new diet and training program. Do you expect AW to have a breakout year in 2012?

Jeff: I would expect him to have a little more production than last season but he would have to be the feature back to really have a breakout year and I don't see any one back getting an extremely high percentage of the carries.

Jeff: On CBS Sports' Dennis Dodd's coaches hot seat scale, Spaz is a 4.0 out of 5 while Dabo Swinney is a 3.0. Explain that to me with Clemson coming off an ACC title.

Brian: Dabo is too high and Spaz too low.

Brian: HD cites BC's experience as a reason the Eagles will return to a bowl in 2012 and turnover at OC as a reason they won't. Does BC get back to a bowl this year? If so, which one?

Jeff: Yes they do and I'll have to save that for our annual predictions.

Jeff: When things seem down last season and if they do this season, at least we're not Penn State right now, right?

Brian: On the field Penn State will be fine. It's off the field that the trouble is just starting.

Brian: The ACC had six players taken in this week's NBA Draft. How many seasons before BC lands another player in the draft?

Jeff: I think BC is an every 3 to 4 year NBA draft candidate producer so in 2 or 3 more years.

Jeff: BC students chanting "It's All Your Fault" at hockey games makes this top 5 list at #2. Surprised?

Brian: Not at all and even if we stole the chant from the Harvard student section. I don't think they mind.

Brian: Last one. It's officially July, which means later this month we'll be treated to the Summer Olympics. Which sport / event are you most looking forward to watching?

Jeff: Women's soccer? Men's swimming? Women's gymnastics? I'm not a big track and field guy.

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